England vs West Indies: Chris Woakes returns for 1st Test, Mark Stoneman, Mason Crane earn maiden call-ups

AFP, Aug, 10 2017

London: Mark Stoneman is set to make his England debut in next week's day/night first Test against Windies at Edgbaston after being included in a 13-man squad announced Thursday from which Keaton Jennings was dropped.

Struggling Durham opener Jennings only averaged 15.87 in eight innings during England's recent 3-1 series win over his native South Africa, which concluded with a 177-run victory in the fourth Test at Old Trafford on Monday.

England named Surrey's Mark Stoneman in the first Test squad against Windies. Image courtesy Twitter @surreycricket

England named Surrey's Mark Stoneman in the first Test squad against Windies. Image courtesy Twitter @surreycricket

Now Surrey batsman Stoneman, a former Durham team-mate of Jennings, is in line to become Alastair Cook's 12th opening partner since the retirement of former captain Andrew Strauss in 2012.

The 30-year-old Stoneman has scored 1,000 runs in first-class cricket this season, including a highest score of 197, while averaging 58.82 with three centuries.

By replacing Jennings, Stoneman will form another all-left-handed combination at the top of England's order with Cook.

Meanwhile Hampshire leg-spinner Mason Crane has been called into a Test squad for the first time having also impressed in England's first-class County Championship this season.

'Jennings will find confidence' 
"Selectors would like to offer their congratulations to Mark Stoneman and Mason Crane who thoroughly deserve their opportunity in the squad," said England selector James Whitaker in an England and Wales Cricket Board statement.

The former England batsman had some words of consolation for Jennings, saying: "Keaton Jennings will return to Durham and will look to recapture the form that earned him selection in the first place.

"I am sure he will find his confidence and look to score runs in the remaining matches of this season."

Fit again pace-bowling all-rounder Chris Woakes has replaced Steven Finn in the squad for a match on his Warwickshire home ground that will be the first day/night Test ever staged in England.

Woakes has fully recovered from a side strain sustained during the Champions Trophy in June and has missed most of the season.

But he made a return to the County Championship earlier this week, where he took five wickets in the match and scored 53 in the second innings as Warwickshire beat Middlesex at Lord's.

"He was impressive in his return game at Lord's this week and if selected in the final line-up, he will be relishing the prospect of playing on his home ground," said Whitaker of Woakes.

The West Indies campaign will see Joe Root, in conjunction with coach Trevior Bayliss, looking to carry on from where he left off after his first Test series as England captain ended in a resounding victory.

"On behalf of the selectors, I would like to wish Joe Root, Trevor Bayliss and all the squad the very best for what will be an exciting series against West Indies," said Whitaker.

The fixture, which starts on Thursday, 17 August, is the first of a three-Test series that continues at Headingley and concludes at Lord's.

England squad for the first Test against Windies:

Alastair Cook (Essex), Mark Stoneman (Surrey), Tom Westley (Essex), Joe Root (Yorkshire, capt), Dawid Malan (Middlesex), Ben Stokes (Durham), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire, wkt), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Toby Roland-Jones (Middlesex), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mason Crane (Hampshire)


17-21 August: England v West Indies, 1st Test, Edgbaston

25-29 August: England v West Indies, 2nd Test, Headingley

07-11 September: England v West Indies, 3rd Test, Lord's

Published Date: Aug 10, 2017 | Updated Date: Aug 10, 2017

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4493 125
2 South Africa 3395 110
3 England 4097 105
4 Australia 3087 100
5 New Zealand 3114 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 5957 119
2 Australia 5505 117
3 India 4717 115
4 England 5645 113
5 New Zealand 5123 111
Rank Team Points Rating
1 New Zealand 1625 125
2 England 1962 123
3 Pakistan 2417 121
4 West Indies 2222 117
5 India 2183 115